The Justice Department is investigating conduct at the Abbott Laboratories infant-formula plant in Sturgis, Mich., that led to its shutdown last year and worsened a nationwide formula shortage, people familiar with the matter said.
Attorneys with the Justice Department’s consumer-protection branch are conducting the criminal investigation, the people said.
The branch, which has criminal as well as civil authority, was involved last year in a settlement with Abbott
that allowed its Sturgis plant to resume operations after Food and Drug Administration inspectors found a potentially deadly bacteria there.
“The DOJ has informed us of its investigation, and we’re cooperating fully,” an Abbott spokesman said.
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